Posted On 10/3/2017
Hazza Bin Zayed: Mohammed Bin Zayed vision inspires Abu Dhabi Business Forum
His Highness Sheikh Hazza Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Vice Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council, said that the Abu Dhabi Business Forum 2017, held in Abu Dhabi yesterday, is inspired by the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed.
H.H Sheikh Hazza added that the forum attracted more than 1,000 personalities in order to achieve active collaboration between all sectors, noting that the spirit of partnership makes all the difference.
His Excellency noted in a tweet via his twitter account that the 2nd edition of Abu Dhabi Business Forum emphasized on the deep cooperation and integration between the public sector and the private one in supporting the economic march and in solidifying sustainable development.
Under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Hazza Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Vice Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council, His Highness Sheikh Diab Bin Mohammed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chairman of the Department of Transport, inaugurated the 2nd edition of Abu Dhabi Business Forum 2017 at Jumairah at Etihad Towers in Abu Dhabi under the title “Partners in Achieving Sustainable Development”.
Organized by the Abu Dhabi Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Department of Economic Development – Abu Dhabi, the forum witnessed the attendance of His Excellency Dr. Ahmed Mubarak Al-Mazroui, Secretary General of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council; His Excellency Jassim Mohammed Buatabh Al Zaabi, Chairman of Abu Dhabi Executive Office; His Excellency Major General Mohammed Khalfan Al Romaithi, Commander-in-Chief of Abu Dhabi Police; His Excellency Sheikh Abdulla Bin Mohamed Al Hamed, Chairman of the Health Department; His Excellency Saif Mohamed Al-Hajery, Chairman of the Department of Economic Development – Abu Dhabi; His Excellency Falah Mohamed Al-Ahbabi, Chairman of the Department of Urban Planning and Municipalities; His Excellency Eng. Awaidha Murshed Al Marar, Chairman of the Department of Energy; and His Excellency Mohamed Thani Murshid Al-Rumaithi, Chairman of the Federation of UAE Chambers of Commerce and Industry and Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
A large number of senior officials from Abu Dhabi public establishments and more than 1,000 people from the public and private companies operating in Abu Dhabi and the UAE attended the forum as well.
Alongside the Abu Dhabi Chamber and the DED-Abu Dhabi a number of authorities and departments in Abu Dhabi took part in the 2nd edition of the Forum including the Health Authority, Department of Education and Knowledge, Department of Urban Planning and Municipalities, Department of Culture and Tourism, and the Higher Corporation for Specialized Economic Zones (ZonesCorp).
In its 2nd edition, the Abu Dhabi Business Forum 2017 aims at strengthening the strategic partnership between the public sector and the private one in Abu Dhabi as well as overcoming all the challenges of the private sector in the emirate. The forum also aims at raising awareness of increasing the contribution of this sector to the GDP and its role in realizing the sustainable economic and social economic development in Abu Dhabi under the wise leadership of the UAE.
Organizing the 2nd edition of the forum comes as a result to the success of the first edition of the event in May 2016 and within the awareness of the Abu Dhabi Chamber and the DED – Abu Dhabi and their strategic partners from public departments to establish strategic partnerships between the public sector and the private one and to contribute towards finding solutions for the challenges of the private sector in the emirate. The forum also acts as a podium to inform businessmen and investors in the emirate with the investment opportunities that are offered by public establishments and that would contribute to increasing the role of the private sector in the sustainable and comprehensive economic development process in the emirate
In a speech he delivered at the beginning of the forum, H.E. Mohamed Thani Murshid Al-Rumaithi, Chairman of the Federation of UAE Chambers of Commerce and Industry and Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Chamber of Commerce and Industry, expressed his utmost thanks and sincere appreciation to His Highness Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, and His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, for their continuous and unlimited support for the private sector in Abu Dhabi and the UAE in general, which positioned this promising sector in a high level that allows it to effectively contribute to the development process in the country. Al-Rumaithi also expressed his thanks and appreciation to H.H. Sheikh Hazza Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Vice Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council, for sponsoring the 2nd edition of the forum and his continuous support to the private sector and the Abu Dhabi Chamber.
“We at the Abu Dhabi Chamber emphasizes on the importance of the partnership between the public and private sectors in launching and establishing giant companies in Abu Dhabi and the UAE in order to assume first positions in different productive and services sectors,” Al-Rumaithi said. “Many companies expanded into the region and headed towards internationality starting from Abu Dhabi until their presence became affective in many countries across the region and the world.”
The Chairman pointed out that the Abu Dhabi Chamber is proud to be the incubator for most of the capabilities which our national companies represent in the private sector in all sectors.
His Excellency extended his thanks and appreciation to their highnesses and heads of local departments in Abu Dhabi and to all authorities and establishments that contributed to organizing the 2nd edition of the forum and to achieving the desired goals in providing the best forms of support and help to the private sector in Abu Dhabi.
68.2% the contribution of non-oil activities to the GDP of Abu Dhabi in Q1 of 2017
For his part, H.E. Saif Mohamed Al-Hajery, Chairman of the Department of Economic Development – Abu Dhabi, expressed his gratitude to H.H. Sheikh Hazza Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Vice Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council, for sponsoring that forum, which reflects His Highness’s awareness to support all the initiatives of empowering the sustainable economic development process in Abu Dhabi.
“The objective of building an effective private sector comes as one of the main axes of Abu Dhabi economic development plan that the government of the emirate gave this sector so much attention within its development plans and policies and exerted hard efforts in order to provide the necessary motivations and opportunities to build new partnerships between the public sector and the private one,” H.E. Al-Hajery said.
The Chairman emphasized on the continuing trend of economic development in Abu Dhabi in the first quarter of 2017, pointing out that the contribution of non-oil activities to the GDP of Abu Dhabi in current prices reached 76.2% according to preliminary estimates issued by the Statistics Center in Abu Dhabi.
H.E. Al-Hajeri added that the forum represents an active podium to exchange ideas amongst the representatives of the public and private sectors. “As you all know, the DED – Abu Dhabi and the Abu Dhabi Chamber organized this forum for the first time back in May 2016. The forum discussed many challenges and issues that affect the business environment of the private sector and the sector’s role as a partner in increasing development efforts in the emirate as well as achieving the objectives of Abu Dhabi Plan… Hence, those challenges were tackled by organizing a number of meetings and workshops with the private sector over the past year with the participation of all strategic partners from public and semi-governmental entities in Abu Dhabi,” he explained.
Al-Hajeri called on all participants in the forum from businessmen and investors to seize the opportunities which the economy of Abu Dhabi offers and to make all the right decisions to increase investments. “We will work effortlessly to provide a proper and motivating environment that helps you develop your businesses and investment projects in the emirate.”
He extended his thanks to the participants of this forum wishing them all the best in their endeavors in finding the proper opportunities for their feasible businesses and investments which would expand partnerships and mutual interests between the public sector and the private one.
Diverse investment opportunities in healthcare and medical services
In a speech he delivered during the forum, H.E. Sheikh Abdulla Bin Mohamed Al Hamed, Chairman of the Health Department, said that the health sector in Abu Dhabi is one of the most attracting sectors to investments considering the promising and important opportunities it offers to investors. “Over the past years, the health sector witnessed considerable growth in the number of medical facilities and the number of those who work in the healthcare sector, as well as the diversity and quality of the provided services,” he said.
“Our participation in Abu Dhabi business Forum is a perfect opportunity to showcase the latest development in the healthcare sector in the emirate. We look forward to work with investors and businessmen in order to take calculated steps based on the finest details and accurate information for their investments in this sector in order to ensure the development and sustainability of the healthcare sector and to ensure the success of their projects,” he added.
Fruitful collaboration between the public sector and the private one will achieve progress and prosperity
For his part, H.E. Falah Mohamed Al-Ahbabi, Chairman of the Department of Urban Planning and Municipalities, said “We gather today to take part in developing our emirate and turn it into a pioneering and sustainable model according to the vision of our wise leadership and the ambitious Abu Dhabi Plan.”
“As public and private establishments, the challenges require us to work creatively in order to find unified solutions and to rise to new levels of accomplishments. This is a collective opportunity to acquire knowledge and participate in building a strong and sustainable economy,” he added.
Al-Ahbabi stated that the 2nd edition of the forum forms a stage for cooperation and working collectively towards reaching diverse and sustainable solutions for the challenges the business sector is facing.
H.E. the Chairman expressed his pleasure for the success of the 2nd edition of the forum. He concluded his speech by saying: “We see challenges around us; however, at the same time, we realize that the sustainable economic and social development and fruitful collaboration between the public sector and the private one will achieve progress and prosperity.”
AED 2.77 billion hotel revenues in Abu Dhabi in the first half of 2017
His Excellency Saif Saeed Ghobash, Director General of the Department of Culture and Tourism, said that the participation of the Department of Culture and Tourism (DCT) in the Abu Dhabi Business Forum is crucial to address and discuss the challenges, obstacles, and opportunities that the private and hospitality sectors encounter in the tourism field.
“The forum enables DCT to discuss and reassess its defined strategies for the development of tourist destinations and points of attraction, particularly since we are currently collaborating with different stakeholders across Abu Dhabi to enhance the ecosystem created and improve the visitor experience, underpinning longer stays in the Emirate.”
Ghobash added that tourism is one of the most prominent and economically promising sectors in the Emirate; further growth and return on Investment can be achieved through the development of an authentic visitor experience for all. “In the first 7 months of 2017, the total hotel revenues in Abu Dhabi reached more than AED 2.77 billion, indicating the huge potential this sector holds,” he said. “Our efforts are directed towards the promotion of new and future attractions, and also the creation of a calendar of anchor and consistent list of events to be on offer annually for tourists, consumers, and businesses. Being recognized as the fastest growing destination city in the region is by MasterCard Global Destination Cities Index recently is just one example of the opportunities ahead of us, and the capital’s reputation as a destination of distinction continues to grow, building on the unique experiences offered.”
The Director General pointed out that with the anticipated opening of Louvre Abu Dhabi in November, “we expect a huge increase in revenues, as we further establish the modern concept of ‘cultural tourism’ in the region. Abu Dhabi will lead this implementation. The museum’s opening is aligned also to our previous endeavors in the development of specialized tourism, such as our projects in business tourism, cruise tourism, along with more traditional leisure tourism.”
We hope that this year’s Abu Dhabi Business Forum will significantly contribute to progressing the visions and methods applied in building fruitful partnerships with the private sector, and in so doing empower the continuous growth of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi,” he concluded.
Shifting into Enablers
The DED – Abu Dhabi delivered a detailed presentation on the outcomes of the first edition of the Abu Dhabi Business Forum and what has been achieved over the past year in finding solutions to the challenges of the private sector.
The DED also announced the launch of Abu Dhabi Investment Bureau which aims, as Mr. Ahmed Mohamed Bin Ghanem, Acting Executive Director of the International Economic Relations Sector at the Department, at attracting investments to Abu Dhabi in the targeted sectors and in a way that supports the income diversification policy of the emirate.
Al-Ghanem pointed out that the new office will contribute to developing a competitive environment for businesses in the emirate by working with key partners and enhances the position of Abu Dhabi as a distinguished investment destination on the world level. He added that the office will work effortlessly to ensure the success of investments even after their inauguration, which would be an added value for investments that the new office will work with companies and investors before and after the inauguration of investment projects in the emirate.
After the presentation, H.H. Sheikh Diab Bin Mohammed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chairman of the Department of Transport, and their excellency chairmen of the public department and H.E. Mohammed Thani Murshid Al-Rumaithi, took a tour around the stands of the participating departments that the DED- Abu Dhabi, Health Authority, Department of Education and Knowledge, Department of Urban Planning and Municipalities, Department of Culture and Tourism, and ZonesCorp presented the investment opportunities they offer to the private sector and businessmen in different sectors including construction, real-estate, private education, healthcare, tourism, industry and workers’ residential cities.
Investment Opportunities in Private Education
During the discussion panels which were organized during the forum, a number of public departments in Abu Dhabi showcased investment opportunities to the companies of the private sector in the emirate.
In a discussion panel on Investing in Private Education and Improving the Quality of Education, the Department of Education and Knowledge presented the available investment opportunities for the private sector in the education sector.
His Excellency Eng. Hamad Ali Al Dhaheri, Executive Director of Private Schools and Quality Assurance Sector at Abu Dhabi Education Council, said in a statement on the occasion of the forum that the education sector is one of the main axes of Abu Dhabi development plans and a main factor of the futuristic vision which aims at transforming the economy of Abu Dhabi into a knowledge-based economy.
He added that the department works effortlessly to increase the role of the private sector in the emirate by drawing plans and programs to attract investments in private schools and to ensure high-quality educational services as well as creating successful strategic partnerships that contributes to building pivotal sectors that support the policy of economic diversification in the emirate and provide learning opportunities to all students.
AED 5 billion investments in private education over the past 7 years
In regard to the accomplishments of the Private Schools and Quality Assurance Sector, Al Dhaheri noted that the sector added 71 new private schools in the emirate of Abu Dhabi in order to cover the increasing demand on private education. “The total amount of investment for the 7-year period reached AED 5 billion,” he said.
Private schools in Abu Dhabi attract 65% of the total number of students in the emirate (245,000 students). This number is expected to grow across the emirate in an accumulated annual rate of 5% to reach the number of student of around 282,000 students by 2020.
The department of Education and Knowledge announced a number of investment opportunities in private education represented in RFPs to build and run new private schools in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi. The investment opportunities will be announced in local newspapers starting from Tuesday, 03 October 2017 with the aim of encouraging investments in private education.
ZonesCorp presents distinguished investment opportunities for the private sector
In a panel discussion designated to Workers’ Cities and held under the title Providing a Decent Life for Workers and Creating an Ideal Operational Environment, ZonesCorp delivered presentations on the investment opportunities which the corporation offer for the private sector, investors and businessmen in Abu Dhabi.
His Excellency Saeed Issa Al-Khaili, Director General of ZonesCorp, said “our presence in Abu Dhabi Business Forum copes with our efforts to contribute to realizing Abu Dhabi Plan which aim at achieving economic diversification by allowing the private sector to take part in achiving its objectives. Therefore, this forum forms an important stage for a constructive collaborative dialogue.”
Al-Khaili added that by participating the Abu Dhabi Business Forum, ZonesCorp looks forward to informing participants, whether senior officials, businessmen or investors, with the new investment opportunities which are aimed to empower the private sector in particular and the national economy of Abu Dhabi in general.
“Starting from our awareness to provide an ideal environment for workers who reside in the Workers’ Cities according to the highest safety and security standards, we are participating in the 2nd edition of the forum. Our first participation was designated to listening to some of the challenges developers face in Workers’ Cities; whereas our second participation comes to present our solutions and initiatives to overcome such challenges,” he added.
For his part, His Excellency Mohamed Helal Al-Muhairi, Director General of the Abu Dhabi Chamber, said that the success of organizing the 2nd edition of the forum in cooperation with the DED – Abu Dhabi reflects the awareness of our wise leadership to strengthening the partnership between the public sector and the private one in Abu Dhabi and to provide opportunities for businessmen and investors through the department and authorities of the Abu Dhabi government in a way that increases the role of the private sector in the comprehensive and sustainable development process in the emirate.
The Director General emphasized that the 2nd edition of the forum act as a podium to inform businessmen and investors in the emirate with the investment opportunities that are offered by public establishments and that would increase their contribution to the execution of services and development projects in the emirate within the joint efforts of the Chamber, the DED and the other public entities to realize the comprehensive and sustainable development process according to the plans of Abu Dhabi and its economic vision.